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Chris Squire - Fish Out Of Water CD (album) cover

FISH OUT OF WATER

Chris Squire

 

Symphonic Prog

3.98 | 440 ratings

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Ivan_Melgar_M
Special Collaborator
Symphonic Prog Specialist
2 stars 2.5 stars really"

Seems incredible that after more than 30 years of listening Progressive Rock, never had the chance to put my hands on "CHRIS SQUIRE'S" almost universally proclaimed magnum opus "Fish Out of the Water" (Yes, heard it casually in a couple of reunions, but never with real attention) , so, despite not being particularly a fan of YES or their solo members works (except Rick Wakeman's), decided to give the album a chance and see what's all the noise about it.

The sad thing is that instead of a Progressive Rock masterpiece, I found an unsuccessful attempt of making a transcendental album with multiple influences, the fact is that in my opinion "Fish Out of the Water" sounds like a mix of YES, Rock, Pop and some boring pastoral leanings all lumped in a sack without any coherence.

The album starts with "Hold Out Your Hands", the preeminent bass in the intro sounds excellent, but when Chris vocals enter in the scene, the track looses any coherence, at one point I don't know what I'm listening, sounds like some disjointed collection of orchestral effects all blended with acute vocals "a la" Jon Anderson and no structure that I can find.

"You by My Side" is a hybrid between blues Rock, Celtic and some Country touches, again mixed rather than blended, the flute by Jimmy Hastings is the only highlight, the rest pretty forgettable, a boring rack with no interest...At least for me.

"Silently Falling" shows us the difference between an epic and a long song, in the first case we're before a solid and well structured song in which the musician uses all the available time to make a coherent work, in the second case (as in "Silently Falling") we're before an extremely long song in which the musician unsuccessfully tries to fill the silent spaces with everything he has at hand but without any logic. I believe the real problem is that SQUIRE wanted to leave the YES and JON ANDERSON sound behind, but wasn't able to create something imaginative enough, so he kept returning to familiar ground, but without the magic of YES.

Being honest some of the frenetic moments are extremely good, but being so uneven and lack of ideas, the song falls bellow the average.

I'm still trying to discover what did CHRIS SQUIRE tried to do in "Lucky Seven", it seems some sort of jazzy track with YES feeling, but only was able to create a repetitive an unimaginative track that bored me after a couple of minutes.

Well, at last it was worth not taking off the CD before the end, "Safe (Cannon Song)" is an excellent track with interesting ideas, and the advantage of being almost totally instrumental. Chris was able to capture the pompous and elaborate sound of the best Prog bands with an interesting development, the highest point of the album.

Yes, it's a bit incoherent by moments and in some sections sounds as if ANDREW POWELL had made the orchestral arrangements, but at least it's imaginative and has strength, just in the moment when I was starting to fall asleep.

Before closing this review, I want to ask if PATRICK MORAZ really plays here, because I read his name in the credits, but never listen the peculiar style that allowed him to take YES, MOODY BLUES and THE NICE (REFUGEE) to their peak.

If it wasn't for the last song, I would had rated "Fish Out of the Water" with one star, but "Safe (Cannon Song)" grants the album at least an extra star and even a bit more....Still I will place "Fish Out of the Water" in a location where I won't listen it frequently, being that I don't want to deteriorate the image I have of CHRIS SQUIRE as excellent backing vocalist even better bassist and icon of Progressive Rock.

Ivan_Melgar_M | 2/5 |

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